Toyota Land Cruiser turns 70

Land Cruiser 70th birthday to be celebrated with new models and special editions

Reuben Van Niekerk
Toyota Land Cruiser
Land Cruiser 300
Land Cruiser Prado

This month marks the 70th birthday of the Toyota Land Cruiser. Originally known as the Toyota BJ, this four-wheel-drive vehicle with a powerful engine was initially designed for military use but quickly gained a reputation for its go anywhere ability. The Land Cruiser name was coined as a result of the vehicle eventually being marketed to civilians in 1954 to compete with the Land Rover.


In its 70-year history the Land Cruiser family has grown to include pick-up, wagon, station wagon and luxury SUV variants, but the core DNA of the model has remained engrained in the metal work.


Land Cruiser 300 goes on sale

The launch of the Land Cruiser 300 in South Africa this month is the next chapter in the Land Cruiser history book and promises to be the best Cruiser yet, taking inspiration from its forefathers to ensure an excellent driving experience.


GR Heritage Parts Project

In celebration of the marque’s 70th birthday, Toyota Gazoo racing have announced the inclusion of the Land Cruiser into its GR heritage Parts programme. This will make available parts for the 40-Series Land Cruiser, produced between 1960 and 1984. The project will include the reproduction of discontinued parts through a special collaboration with suppliers.


Land Cruisers that have been discontinued for many years continue to be used for work and play but a shortage of spare parts in recent years has been a cause for concern for Land Cruiser owners worried about no longer being able to keep their vehicles on the road.


This prompted the decision by Toyota Gazoo Racing to reproduce parts for which there is the greatest demand and need, enabling customers to continue to drive their cherished vehicles safely and with peace of mind. Preparations are at an advanced stage for the production of parts relating to critical functions such as driving, turning and braking of the 40-Series Land Cruiser. These heritage parts will include engines, drivelines and exhaust systems.


Prado updated

The Land Cruiser Prado has received minor updates to ensure its longevity and should reach local showrooms during August. Specification updates include stylish new 19-inch alloy wheels for the VX and VX-L models fitted with 265-55-R19 tyres. TX models will now also be fitted with reverse tilt models.


70th celebration model

In celebration of 70 years of Land Cruiser, Toyota South Africa will be launching a 70th Special Edition model based on the 70-Series. While development is still underway, customers can register their interest at their nearest dealer ahead of its launch in the last quarter of 2021.


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